Sorry I have been so bad at keeping up with this, it seems that I have managed to keep myself busy in an attempt to speed up the time I have left.
So, where do I start! I seem to have accumulated a mountain of symptoms since my last update, my emotional state, however, you will be glad to know, is much better. (I still haven’t got the pregnancy glow- but I have come to terms with that). As the last update was a massive rant, I will start my list of symptoms on a positive. I feel like a list is needed, I have that many pregnancy aliments.
- Increase in energy -I have been wanting to go out and do things rather than stay in bed all day, I haven’t felt the need to nap, just in general felt a lot more human.
- Period type cramps – I thought I had escaped 9 months without any period cramps. Oh no, something to do with your uterus stretching.
- Lightening Crotch – Feels like my lady parts are being stabbed from the insides. Rob likes to call this ‘THUNDER VAG’. (the name is actually quite appropriate). This is apparently the baby touching your cervix!
- Braxton Hicks – I have noticed I get these rather frequently at night, however I quite like them. I find them quite reassuring.
- Swelling– For some reason this has really bothered me. My hands and legs have become so puffy. Ive found that a bath with epsom salt helps a great deal, or a massage!
- Pressure – Feeling like the whole of my upper body feels as though it’s going to fall through one of my…exits…at any moment.
Isn’t that a delightful list. It’s really not that bad at all its totally manageable and thats coming from the worlds biggest wimp. Other than symptoms I don’t have much else to report. I had my final growth scan, Baby Free is measuring up perfectly average, which means I can have my water birth.
In non Baby related news, me and Rob have been getting creative. I decided to do something productive with my time and painted this for the nursery. If you want a print of this I have made a FREE downloadable print clicking on the picture below. I have made the resolution super high, so you can print it large and it won’t be pixelated.
And Rob has been rather clever and made these amazing wine caddies and flower planters out of reclaimed wood, they are available to buy from etsy here for £16.99. For my blog followers, get 20% off with this coupon code – THESTUDENTMUM25
Have a look at what I got for my baby shower – Be nosey! I love looking at what other mums got! Or maybe you’re attending a baby shower and need some gift ideas. Either way, I hope you enjoy watching, and don’t forget to subscribe!
This update, is a bit of a rant. So far I have felt compelled to treasure every single second of pregnancy, and I can honestly say I have enjoyed most of it and I am beyond amazed at how my body has adapted to accommodate a little human. However this past week, treasure every moment, I have not. I have spent the past two weeks sleeping (or not sleeping) with a mound of pillows between my legs as an attempt to reach some sort of comfort level. Once I have settled, I find myself getting out of bed every 30 minutes because my bladder has been restricted to the size of an ant. On top of pregnancy incontinence, every time I lay down I turn into a fire breathing dragon- heart burn has made an unwelcome return this week.
So sleep, which is pretty essential, is not on the cards for me at the moment. Aswell as this, maybe even because of the lack of sleep, my skin has erupted into an acne fest. I feel that I have been let down by the legend that is ‘pregnancy glow’. I am not glowing. I have been excited about this impending glow. So now I’m on the home straight I thought I’d be in the land of Jlo-esque skin. Instead I am a sweaty, spotty mess-Glowing I am not.
Rant over. On a more positive note, I had a growth scan this week and got to see little (or not so little) Baby Free again. No matter how many scans I have, each time I’m amazed that I actually have a baby in there. We even saw that Baby Free has hair! little strands of hair floating around. Also Baby Free appears to be a bit of a chunk, he/she is measuring a couple of weeks ahead, and the estimated weight at 33 weeks was 5 lbs! However according to Bev (my midwife) growth scans are notorious for being inaccurate.
Again I apologise for a slightly hormonal and sleep deprived update this week. I’m sure things will improve? ha.
Firstly sorry I missed the 30 Week update, we have been so busy, but rest assure nothing remotely exciting happened at 30 weeks. I still cannot believe I have gone beyond the 30 week mark! I remember when I’d hear women say they were 30 weeks pregnant in the past and I’d think to myself, “Oh my gosh, you are going to have your baby tomorrow!” Ha! Now that I’m the one who is 32 weeks along, I feel like 8 weeks (give or take) seems like an awfully long time until our little one is supposed to arrive.
So 32 weeks, Baby Free is the size of a Jicama (a what? A Mexican yam, to be exact. I think the people who pick these must be running out of fruits). Well my Jicama is growing fast now, and so I am I- I have put on 21 lbs since my booking appointment, which I have found hard to accept, but then I remember that it’s keeping baby and me healthy. I do feel like this particular Jicama has had a growth spurt this week, I am really starting to feel the weight of the baby. Bending down has become something I particularly dread, I find myself thinking about ways I can reduce how many times I have to bend down- one tactic I go for is shoving things with my feet into one big pile and then picking everything up in one go, however the difficulty is then getting back up. Once I’m down, I tend to stay down so I can figure out how I will get back up.
This week we entered the world of ante-natal classes, I had no idea what to expect, all my knowledge on ante-natal classes came solely from sitcoms. Needless to say the classes were quite different from my expectations. They were helpful and a nice way to meet other mums and dads to be. Our first class was ‘Life with new baby’, in which we learnt all the essentials on how to care for our baby in the first few weeks. We then had ‘Labour and Labour pains class’ I admit this one was slightly daunting and really brought to life that literally in a few weeks I will be pushing out my baby. However I would really recommend going to a birthing class, if, like me you are a first time mum. For us labour is the unknown- We don’t know what to expect, what its going to feel like, how long we will be in hospital for, so the more you know, the less scary it will seem when the time comes. (Hopefully!).
28 weeks! Baby Free is now the size of a large Eggplant- funny, when I first read what size my baby is this week I read it as a ‘large Elephant’. Obviously, no baby could be the size of a large elephant, but it still took a few seconds to process that I had read it wrong. Can I blame that on baby brain?
So compared to last weeks mishaps, this week has been relatively un-eventful. The time had come for my Glucose Tolerance Test, the 28 week mark had been etched in my mind for months as I knew this ordeal was coming. I say ordeal, it’s really not that bad, but I don’t have a good track history with having my blood taken (at my booking bloods I ended up laying in the hospital car park with my legs in the air). So its fair to say I was dreading this gruelling 3 hour appointment of doom. For those that don’t know, a GTT is to test for gestational diabetes. You are required to fast for 12 hours, then when you arrive at the clinic, the midwife will take your blood, its not a lot just 2 tubes. The nurse will then give you a sweet, sugary mixture, containing the equivalent of 75g (2.6oz) of glucose. Your blood will be tested an hour later, and then an hour after that. I survived, without even breaking into a sweat, so if you are due to have a GTT- you will be ok. Of course, its unpleasant, but nowhere near as bad as I had imagined. Make sure you take some entertainment, because you will be there for 3 hours with out being able to leave.
This week we also had a visit from our ‘Health advisor’, this was both exciting and daunting. There was a massive amount information unloaded on us, well I say us, but Rob was too busy watching a video of a panda sneezing on youtube. You will also be given the ‘famous red book’ in other words your baby’s health records. I found this incredibly exciting, I don’t really know why. Apart from bombarding us with information and giving us the red book, the ante-natal visit doesn’t really include any thing else.
Baby makes him/herself known at regular intervals throughout the day; huge churning movements where my whole stomach moves from one side to the other. Now and then an egg-sized bump will appear.I find the movements absolutely amazing; there’s not a moment I don’t appreciate them. After the anxiety of the first few months where there are no movements and then when movement can be sporadic and lack of it can completely freak you out, it’s incredible to be able to just sit or lie still and press on your tummy and have an almost instant reassurance – “I’m here! Don’t you worry about me!”.
Main physical development of the week and piles update: a slight “heaviness” downstairs and the feeling that the world might fall through the old ladyparts at any given moment. It’s time to practice those Kegals!
Firstly sorry that this update is a little late, 26 weeks has been a pain in the backside- literally- that pun will become clear. I shall worn you, that this update isn’t overly glamorous and to be quite frank is just a bit unpleasant.
So I am just putting it out there, I have developed piles, hence the backside pun. My attempt at making writing about my bottom less awkward. Haemorrhoids/piles are a fairly common pregnancy complaint, often caused by constipation- if thats the case eat a high fibre diet and keep your liquid intake up. However mine is caused by Baby Free being head down and very low and putting pressure on my bottom area. Lovely. Walking and laying on my left has helped the-situation. My midwife also prescribed ‘Anusol’, which I have to admit is particularly uncomfortable to apply, but has worked a treat. Sitting down is still slightly problematic, and I have been tempted to blow up our beach rubber ring to sit in.
While at the height of bottom problems, I was having an epsom salt bath everyday which is meant to be amazing for piles and pregnant ladies in general. This leads me on to my next, very un-glamourous issue of the week. Apparently having an epsom salt bath every day can give you a bacterial infection down there (Again I am so sorry if you stumbled across this page and are now reading about piles and bacterial infections). However after a visit to my GP – by this point I had become used to talking about my personal areas and was given some good ol’ canesten, which soon sorted it out.
At around 26 weeks you will be due another Midwife appointment, and then will have them every 2 weeks. This then brings me onto the next problem of the week – yes this all really happened in one week. When my Midwife was listening in to Baby Free’s heartbeat, the heartbeat was missing a beat, this is called an Ectopic heartbeat. She told me not to worry, and to head to my local hospital’s Day assessment unit to be monitored. Now as a first time mum, of course I worried. I got home and broke down in tears, I started to think about everything I could of done that might of effected Babys heart. Anyway, it turns out ectopic heartbeats are fairly common, and usually sort themselves out before birth. By the time I got to hospital Baby Frees heart was already back to normal.
So its fair to say this week has not been the best, I have felt utterly un-attractive and have spent the whole week avoiding sitting down. Despite this, nothing makes me happier than seeing my belly grow and knowing that in 14 weeks I will be able to hold my baby and it will all be totally worth it. I would have piles for the rest of my life for this little human inside me!
The week in which I ate my body weight in Kiwis, so it turns out that in fact I do have a craving and yes it is kiwis. I mean its not coal or anything, but I still find it pretty random. I even sent Rob out on a kiwi mission to source the perfect kiwi, what even is a perfect kiwi? anyway, I’ve been eating about 4 a day which is definitely not good on the ol’ pregnancy bowels.
Aside from kiwis, this week has been mainly dominated by achy bones, but just when Im asleep, or trying to be asleep. So sleeping is turning into a stressful experience of tossing and turning and a whole lot of huffing and puffing. Rob has been complaining that it feels like he is on a boat I’m fidgeting so much. But alas, once I’m up and about during the day the aches and pains almost completely disappear, well, apart from my back which detests me being in any position other than sitting upright with my back impossibly straight. Baby is giving me a posture masterclass.
I also had a midwife appointment this week, it has been 9 weeks since I last saw my midwife, which seemed like a long time to wait and I had accumulated a lengthy list of questions. However I got over excited about hearing the baby’s heartbeat and didn’t ask any. So I turned to google, which is just a very bad idea. If you have an anterior placenta, ask your midwife about it, not google. Back to the appointment, all the normal checks were done, everything seems to be going surprisingly straight forward. I have also booked myself and Rob into a few antennal classes, which rob is absolutely dreading, he asked me this evening “Paige, what shall I wear to the classes, do you think I need to get some yoga trousers?”. Im not entirely sure what he thinks is going to happen at an antenatal class, but I’m getting quite a bit of enjoyment out his fear.
I am also noticing some physical limitations this week, running up the stairs to race someone on a escalator is not an option anymore, I found this out in Marks and Spencers (I genuinely nearly passed out) I have also adopted the pregnancy waddle, much to Robs amusement.
Rob and I have started reading to the baby every evening, we love doing this, its a great way to bond with your bump. Baby Free loves it aswell, well I think so, by week 24 your babys hearing has developed and can recognise your voice. It’s also getting us into an evening routine ready for when Baby joins us.
Two exciting things happened to me this week-
- The checkout lady at Lidl asked me when I was due
- A man gave up his seat for me on the tube
Both times I almost jumped up and hugged the strangers, I have never been so excited. It took a few seconds to register, but then I realised that I was actually visibly pregnant. Well kind of, either pregnant or Christmas podge, and to be fair I was buying nappies in Lidl. BUT It was real – it was actually happening. It’s hard to believe that something I honestly thought would never happen, is happening! Possibly because years of believing I couldn’t have children, and now I have a little mango sized baby inside me. I shall backtrack slightly, and brush over the history without getting to depressing. When I was an impressionable teenager I developed an eating disorder, I was very poorly, and the doctors warned me that I might not be able to have children. I was never actually told that I would never have children, but I tend to think of life in terms of disastrous book endings, and have spent years thinking negatively about the subject. However a few months back (much like an disastrous indie book) I found myself locked in my University toilet, trousers round my ankles, puffy eyed with a positive pregnancy test in hand. Not exactly ideal, but I had a little life in my belly.
And so to have other people, strangers, verify that you have a baby on the way? Well. I have to admit that I got a little overexcited. In terms of symptoms this week theres not a great deal to update. Sorry to start the updates at a pretty boring time and to have missed all of the wonders of first trimester symptoms, but frankly for my emotional wellbeing I thought it was best to start a blog once everything had settled down. The main things I have noticed this week are-
- A much more active baby, kicking away every few hours. If I get worried that I haven’t felt baby Free kick (partners last name is Free), I find laying down and putting music on usually evokes some kind of reaction.
- Far less frequent emotional outbursts (although Call the midwife is still a no-go)
- Dry and itchy bump- Take a look at my stretch mark creams and oils post.
- Out of breath – slightly embarrassing when you can’t walk up a flight of stairs without being out of breath
- Increased appetite! Before pregnancy I had an appetite of a sparrow, that has all changed. I want all things sweet and sugary with no nutritional value. I have put on 10lbs since my first booking appointment, which for me is a miracle. I was a measly 6st 8 lbs and now I’m in the 7 st club!
One last thing I thought I would mention, I started going swimming this week. Swimming is great exercise when you are pregnant and I really enjoy going. Just take it easy, enjoy feeling weightless and enjoy getting your body some extra exercise. I also find going in the evening is a great way to unwind and helps me get a better nights sleep.